Shoosmiths underlines Scottish growth plans by reinforcing senior team

Law firm Shoosmiths has announced two promotions and a senior hire, moves it says underline its plans to drive further growth in Scotland.

From left: Janette Speed, Sheelagh Cooley, and Barry McKeown. Picture: Suzanne Heffron.
From left: Janette Speed, Sheelagh Cooley, and Barry McKeown. Picture: Suzanne Heffron.

The UK firm – which has offices in Edinburgh and Glasgow – said Sheelagh Cooley, a specialist in property finance who joined as a senior associate in 2014, has been promoted to partner.

It marks one of 13 promotions to partner firm-wide. Lateral hire Barry McKeown, a residential development and investment specialist, has also joined as a partner in the property team, having advised UK plcs, property funds and large private corporates.

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Shoosmiths said its Scotland property team has consequently seen its headcount increase to 22, following the recent recruitment of Gillian Ralph as a senior associate and Gillian Sidey and Rachael McCallum as solicitors.

The firm also flagged the promotion of corporate solicitor Jen Paton to senior associate, focusing on an expanding mergers and acquisitions remit in the Edinburgh corporate team led by partner Alison Gilson. Janette Speed, partner and head of Shoosmiths office in Scotland, said: “These appointments reflect Shoosmiths’ strategy to develop its presence in Scotland and to provide its growing blue-chip client base with the highest quality of advice.”

Separately, Scottish legal firm Gilson Gray has promoted two of its team to partner.

Sally Nash takes on the role in the Gilson Gray family law team while John Fulton has been made partner in its property department.

Both joined Gilson Gray on the same day two years ago.

The firm – which signed up a partner from collapsed firm Morisons – said its growth has come on the back of “cherry- picking and harnessing the skills of the top legal talent in Scotland”.